Andy Diaz Hope & Laurel Roth
Allegory of the Monoceros, 2008
Jacquard tapestry
106 x 76 in.
edition of 8

As part of their collaborative “Future Darwinist” installation, Andy Diaz Hope and Laurel Roth have woven a tapestry edition depicting a cast of iconic fauna drawn from recent developments in genetic research. The artists write that their Allegory of the Monoceros marks “the turning point of evolutionary forces from Darwinian natural selection to human-centric evolution.” The branch structure of the central apple tree is based on Darwin’s “Tree of Life,” an early formulation of his theory of natural selection. Monoceros is Latin for “unicorn,” and the creatures at the top of the tapestry are narwhals, whose single tusks were once thought to be the magical horns of unicorns. In the place of unicorns or the chimera of classical tapestries, Monoceros features Dolly the cloned sheep, a Cerberus made of the first cloned dog fused together with his genetic and birth parents, a mouse with a human ear affixed to its back, and other fantastical but reality-based creatures.